Sunday, October 13, 2013


She's a southern belle from Alabama with a gorgeous red coat.   Hence, the name Scarlett. 

But she is nothing like the feisty, determined protagonist portrayed by Vivien Leigh in Gone with the Wind.   No, my Scarlett is a sweet and affectionate girl who is learning to be an 'inside dog' after spending the first year of her life as an outdoor kennel dog with her mother, sister and other extended corgi family.  

In July I started looking for a slightly older puppy to help fill the void in my life and be a companion to Princess.   After contacting a number of breeders in the Midwest and discovering that 'teenagers' are hard to find, I saw a picture of 10 month old Scarlett (then called Liz) on a website and was captivated by her beautiful red coat and bright, intelligent eyes.   The breeder was from in Alabama and didn't want to put a puppy on a plane, and I had a trip to Africa coming up.   So we had some logistical issues to work out. We decided to meet at their vacation home in the Ozarks in September.   Two weekends ago, my friend Betty and I drove to southern Missouri to get her.

Being taken away from your mother, sister and the only home you've ever had is traumatic and Scarlett was pretty skittish at first.   She is a good size female - lean and muscular, with strong back legs.    She'd approach me gingerly, then spring back and run away when I held out my hand.   I'm not sure if she was nervous or just wanted to play.   She has a sweet personality, is affectionate and more cautious than Princess and Dee Dee ever were. Things that I took for granted with my other girls - like jumping in and out of the car without help - are new to Scarlett, and she is slowly gaining confidence to do them.  The nice part of that is that she doesn't  jump on the furniture.  

Scarlett does very well in her kennel and seems to enjoy the safety and security of her 'own house'.   She is very quiet and rarely fusses.   I still can't figure out when she sleeps as she always seems to be sitting up and looking around - even in the middle of the night!    She has a lot of puppy energy and loves to run.  Now that we are home and she is feeling more settled, I'm able to drop her leash and let her run in the yard.  She loves her toys.   And her favorite toy is Zak!    Those two absolutely adore each other!   No matter that she weighs five times as much as him; he doesn't seem the least bit intimidated!    If I let one of them out, they'll go straight to the other one's kennel.    Scarlett can be kind of rough (not aggressive; just plays hard) so they do need supervision, but for the most part I just let them roughhouse.    I got a few videos of them in the back yard last week.    I love the way she 'body slams' him and the way he grabs her leash and tries to drag her around!  They are very entertaining, and as he grows and they become closer in size, they will have even more fun together. 

Scarlett has a few vices, but they are mostly related to her age.   Because she is full grown, it's easy to forget that she is barely a year old.    She is close to being housebroken and getting more privileges every day. We are still getting to know each other, and she has a strong desire to please me.    She doesn't seem to chew a lot;  however, she loves to tear things; bedding in particular (dust ruffle, comforter etc.) and also paper!   She shredded my homeowners insurance bill yesterday.   Does that mean I can use 'the dog ate my homework' excuse?
A lot of people have asked how Princess is doing with all the change.   I wasn't too concerned when I brought Zak home because other than being an annoyance, I couldn't imagine her viewing him as much of a threat.   But I did wonder how she would respond to a larger, highly energetic one year old.   They have both done wonderfully. Scarlett and Zak are best pals, and they seem to understand that Princess is old and tired and doesn't want to play with them.  They leave her alone and seem to actually respect her.   A few evenings ago I went outside and Princess and Scarlett were sitting together on the front porch, just 'hanging out'.   Made me smile.  

And so .... we are now a 'family of five' and life has been pretty crazy!  It takes me a good hour in the morning just to get everyone out to go potty, fed, exercised and back in their kennels.   We repeat the same routine in the evening.  I come home at lunchtime to let them out, and I have a professional dog sitter come in once a day as well.   This is a 'season' and life won't always be this hectic.    I'm extremely busy, but not stressed and went into this with my eyes open.  I try to stick to somewhat of a schedule although things don't always go the way I plan them.  I've been grateful for a mild and pleasant Fall as it's much easier to take dogs out at 3 a.m. when it's 50 degrees than it is at 20!    But winter is coming - I know that - and we'll adjust when the time comes.   It will be fun to see Zak and Scarlett experience snow for the first time!

1 comment:

RETA said...

Such a cute BlogSpot!